The Dallas Cowboys were a bit of a sleeper destination for Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel leading up to the 2014 NFL Draft. But Manziel was there when the Cowboys were on the clock with the 16th pick in the first round on Thursday night, and they passed on him. Dallas owner Jerry Jones was blunt when asked why he didn’t take Johnny Football: Tony Romo is better. Jones claimed that Tony Romo was going to be the Cowboys’ franchise quarterbacks “for several years to come.” That makes sense, and frankly, Manziel was not a fit with Dallas for a number of reasons. The Cowboys selected Notre Dame offensive lineman Zack Martin, and Jones said it was “the obvious football decision.” Again, he’s probably right because Romo’s protection has been suspect at best over the past few seasons. Jones continued:
Frankly, it was not even a thought. The fact that we got Romo more (protection) with that quality of player, took any of the positives (away from drafting Manziel). There’s no way any quarterback comes in here and beats out Tony Romo. We know that. The fact Martin was there mitigated any consideration of any thinking about going with Johnny.
Jones said all of the right things and he’s absolutely correct. Manziel is a wild card who could wind up being a bust in the NFL. There was no need for the Cowboys to take a risk on him when they already have a quarterback on a team with other serious needs.
I think the team desperately needs to fix its secondary and add some help at both defensive end and defensive tackle, but the interior of the offensive line also needed to be upgraded and Martin will likely be a guard at the next level. The Cowboys got better by adding Martin, there’s no guarantee they would have by drafting Manziel.